Graduate Admissions

The Mathematics Department offers Ph.D. and Master's degrees in various areas of Mathematics. Please review the program information and decide which program you would like to apply to before reading the admissions requirements below (the general requirements vary for each program).

Admissions for the Quantitative Finance & Risk Management Master's Degree programs differ from the other programs offered in the Mathematics department. Please visit the Quant admissions page for more information.

On this page you will find the following information regarding admission to the Mathematics Department's graduate programs:

Application Timeline

The Mathematics Department's graduate programs only accept applications for admission Fall semesters. The application for Fall 2017 admission will be available staring in September 2016. The Fall 2017 deadline is December 15, 2016 for all applicants.

General Requirements for Admission

A student must have completed a bachelor's degree at an accredited college or university in order to be considered for admission.

Admissions for the Quantitative Finance & Risk Management Master's Degree programs differ from the other programs offered in the Mathematics department. We are now accepting applications for this program; please visit the Quant admissions page for more information.

Applied & Interdisciplinary Mathematics (AIM) Ph.D. & AIM Master's Admission Requirements
We admit AIM Master's students from a variety of academic backgrounds. More information about admission requirements for the AIM Master's degree programs can be found here.

Successful AIM Ph.D. applicants will demonstrate an interest in an interdisciplinary area of applied mathematics in addition to substantial mathematical ability. Two types of students are generally considered for admission to the AIM Ph.D. program:

  • Mathematics majors with excellent grades in mathematics courses, outstanding GRE scores in the mathematics subject test, and excellent letters of recommendation. The admissions committee will also take into account other scholarly activities such as summer research experience, published papers, or courses in other fields.
  • Non-mathematics majors from the physical, life, or engineering sciences, or from other appropriate areas of study. Such students are expected to have completed at least two upper division mathematics courses, and/or have substantial exposure to mathematics in other courses, and are strongly advised to submit a GRE subject test score for an exam in the major field (in addition to the required GRE mathematics subject test). Other experience in working with mathematics (for instance, summer research positions) will also be taken into account, as well as grade point average and letters of recommendation. Applicants not majoring in mathematics should seriously consider submitting in addition scores from a GRE subject test in their major area.

Mathematics Ph.D. & Mathematics Master's Admission Requirements
The undergraduate major need not be mathematics, but a student should have mastered material roughly equivalent to the undergraduate mathematics major at The University of Michigan including:

  • three semesters of calculus
  • one or two semesters of differential equations
  • one semester courses in modern algebra, linear algebra, geometry or topology
  • advanced calculus of one and several variables

In addition, a student should have completed at least three additional mathematics courses and at least two courses in related fields such as statistics, computer science, or the physical sciences. Students with strong records in less comprehensive programs will be considered for admission but if admitted should expect to spend the first one or two semesters in graduate school completing their undergraduate preparation in mathematics. Based on historical data, we expect that successful applicants to the Ph.D. program will have an overall GPA of at least 3.3 on a 4.0 scale.


REQUIRED Application Materials

An application to a graduate program in Mathematics consists of the following. Each of these items is required from applicants for ALL Master's & Ph.D. programs.

  • Rackham Online Application with fee.
    • Statement of Purpose: The Statement of Purpose should be a concise, well-written essay about your mathematical background, your career goals, and how Michigan's graduate program will help you meet your career and educational objectives. If there are specific faculty members at Michigan that you might like to work with, please mention this in your statement.
    • Personal Statement: This is different from the Statement of Purpose in that we ask that you write about things not captured by the application or the Statement of Purpose. Tell us about where you grew up, when you first decided you wanted to study mathematics, what challenges you faced and how you overcame them in your pursuit of mathematics
    • Curriculum Vitae/Resume (4 page limit) Upload your curriculum vitae or resume that describes your education, work experience, research and teaching experience, professional affiliations, volunteer activity and community engagement, honors and awards.
    • 3 letters of recommendation. Register your recommenders for the electronic Letters of Recommendation system in the online application, this is the preferred method of submission. If your recommender would prefer a paper copy of the Recommendation form (PDF format), they may be downloaded here.
    • Unofficial Transcripts: upload all unofficial copies of your transcripts.
  • Official GRE General scores: Request ETS to send official scores directly to the Rackham Graduate School at the University of Michigan
    • The ETS school code for the University of Michigan Rackham Graduate School is 1839
    • The ETS code for the GRE test for Actuarial Science is 0701; AIM is 0702; and Mathematics is 0703
  • Official GRE Mathematics Subject score: Request ETS to send official scores directly to the Rackham Graduate School at the University of Michigan using the codes above.
  • Official Transcripts from all post secondary Institutions are submitted to the University of Michigan Rackham Graduate School. Send one copy of all Official transcripts to the Rackham Graduate School at the University of Michigan. Directions on what qualifies as an official transcript and how to submit official transcripts can be found here.
  • Non-native English speakers have additional requirements:
    • Official TOEFL or IELTS Scores are required for non-native English speakers. Visit the Rackham School of Graduate Studies for more information on their TOEFL Requirement.
      • Minimum Requirements: TOEFL overall score must be 84 or higher. IELTS overall score must be 6.5 or higher. Applicants who do not meet the minimum requirements will not be considered. Applicants are allowed to retake the test and resubmit scores. If they meet the minimum requirements, their application will then be considered.
      • Request TOEFL to send official copy to the University of Michigan Rackham Graduate School. The ETS code for the TOEFL test is 72
    • International students whose native language is not English and who are applying for financial support should submit (if possible- this is not required) an extra letter of reference concerning their ability to conduct classroom instruction in English. This letter must be written by a native English speaker who is familiar with university mathematics and the challenges that teachers who utilize English as a second language face. Recommenders commenting on English ability should email their letter to instead of using the process indicated above for other letters of recommendation.


Additional Information & Important Items to Remember

Because of the processing time (often more than two months), the GRE and TOEFL or IELTS tests should be taken by October, 2015 and in no case later than December, 2015. Note that for Pure Mathematics, AIM Program and the Actuarial Program, the GRE aptitude (general) and GRE advanced (subject) mathematics tests are required. While there are no minimum acceptable GRE scores, a high standard is expected. No admission action will be taken without the official results.

Letters of recommendation play an especially crucial role in the admission process. Applicants should choose as recommenders people who know their strengths and weaknesses relevant to graduate study in mathematics. The most useful letters are those which list in some detail the accomplishments of the student and make direct comparisons with other students who have succeeded at major U.S. graduate schools. Foreign students already in the U.S. should submit letters from their U.S. institution, whenever possible. Please register your recommenders for the electronic Letters of Recommendation when using the Online Application.

Those students who will have completed a Master's degree in Mathematics by the time they begin studies at The University of Michigan must apply to the Ph.D. program. Others may apply to either program. It is possible, but not automatic, to move from one program to the other.


  • The ETS school code for the University of Michigan Rackham Graduate School is 1839.
  • The ETS code for the GRE test for:
    • Actuarial Science is 0701
    • AIM is 0702
    • Mathematics is 0703
  • The ETS code for the TOEFL test is 72.

Note: All credentials submitted for admission consideration become the property of the University of Michigan and will not be returned in original or copy form.

Additional Information: Please visit the admissions page of the Rackham Graduate School for additional information regarding admission including: Minimum graduate school requirements, residency, application fees and submitting transcripts.

Financial Support for Graduate Students

Master's Programs

Most of our Master's programs do not offer any form of financial support. The one Master's program that offers full support is the Marjorie Lee Browne Scholars program.

Ph.D. Programs

Most students enrolled in the Ph.D. program in Mathematics are granted full financial support including an annual stipend, tuition waiver, and health insurance for a period of five years, subject to satisfactory progress. The Department offers aid in the form of Graduate Student Instructorships, Research Assistantships, and Fellowships.

All entering Ph.D. students will be considered for Graduate Student Instructorships, which normally require four classroom hours of teaching per week plus additional office hours during the Fall and Winter terms. The stipend for such an appointment in 2014 -- 2015 is $9,485.50 per term. In addition, Graduate Student Instructors receive a full tuition waiver. Teaching duties may involve teaching a section of a first-year calculus or pre-calculus course or serving as an instructor for recitation sections attached to a faculty lecture in multivariable calculus or elementary differential equations.

The Department of Mathematics has many fellowship opportunities, including the Copeland, Glover, Rainich, and Shields Fellowships which may provide a stipend, tuition waiver and in some cases a reduced teaching load. Other fellowships administered by the Rackham Graduate School can be found at their Fellowships office.

The University of Michigan is part of the CIC consortium, which also awards fellowships to outstanding underrepresented applicants. Also available are prestigious Rackham Science Award’s given out by the Rackham Graduate School.

After Admission

All new Graduate Student Instructors are required to attend an orientation and training program which is held the week before classes begin. New Graduate Student Instructors whose native language is not English must pass an English Evaluation which tests the specific oral skills needed for classroom teaching and are required to attend a three-week cultural orientation program starting in July.

Research Assistantships are awarded mainly to senior Ph.D. students to relieve them of teaching duties during the final part of their dissertation research. Students at this point may also compete for Rackham Dissertation Fellowships, which provide full support for one year, or Research Partnerships. A small number of positions as paper-graders for the larger advanced courses is available each term.

Some additional funds are often available for support during the summer. More advanced students who are actively involved in research may be supported from NSF grants awarded to faculty members. For other students there is a limited number of Departmental fellowships and a few teaching positions are available. No advanced graduate courses are offered in either the Spring or Summer half-terms and students are encouraged to spend some of their summers working in government or industry.

If you have any questions regarding the application process, please contact the Department of Mathematics at (734) 615-3439. You can also e-mail us at: